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Pros and Cons of sea phases

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  • Pros and Cons of sea phases

    Hi there. I have just been accepted by Clyde Marine for sponsorship for Deck Officer training. I am at the stage of choosing my preferred sponsorship company and id like to get a better insight of what life is like for a deck cadet on board each type of ship. So if anyone can share info on their experiences on cruises, oil tankers, cargo, container ships etc that would be great. I'm most interested in wht there is to do on board when not on duty and also what is shore leave like on each ship? Thanks

  • #2

    Pros- can be interesting varied work (winch work anchor handling, supply, diving, construction)with lots of responsibility and ship handling at lower ranks (and even as a cadet) than in other types of vessel, very hands on and practical a lot of the time, small crews and the type of work which can be quite intense at times means that crews still have a sense of camaraderie onboard, there are still large amounts of Europeans onboard which affects attitudes, culture and the food you have onboard in what I would say a positive way, but that is personal. The chances of employment are higher for British officers in this type of ship and it is a good foot in the door to an industry which most people struggle to get into. Welfare onboard is generally better- with tv/ internet/ phone access much better than those of deep sea ships. Cabins tend to be smaller but are usually of a high standard (you may have to share a cabin). Trips are shorter once qualified- usually 4weeks on/off up to 6weeks on/off dependent on where you are in the world, of course as a cadet on this type of ship you can expect trips to be much longer to fit into college allocated sea phases.

    Cons- there can be (though not necessarily) less sailing time (short runs if you?re working in the North Sea) or time keeping station on DP-similar to an anchor watch), this can make it difficult to complete navigational training tasks/ watch time as a cadet, similar for cargo work- many offshore vessels do very limited cargo work, watches are 12 hours, 7 days a week sometimes split 6on/off which can be pretty hard going, cadets are not an exception from this, many of the areas you work have very bad weather and it can be hell in winter, the North Sea in winter is not much fun. Offshore can also be incredibly boring at times, not sailing and out at sea for 6 weeks straight maybe moving metres rather than miles is not uncommon for Dive/ Construction vessels.

    Time off- normally people watch films, read, study (if you?re a good cadet ), smoke, eat, exercise... on some vessels it?s common to watch films together, on others people tend to hide in their cabins, I think this is becoming more common due to the policy of not drinking onboard, technology (people have laptops and are just as likely to watch a film alone) and mixed nationalities onboard where people socialise less.


    • #3
      Thanks for going into that much depth Laura, your really helping me out!